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November 17, 2004: Memorials


Monty Clarke, a resident of Asheville, N.C., since 1940 and active in the Farmers’ Federation with which his father, Dumont Clarke Sr. 1905, was affiliated, died Sept. 7, 2004, a month before he would have turned 92.

In Asheville he was a member of the First Presbyterian Church, where he was a faithful usher, and a member of the Civitan Club, the Biltmore Forest Country Club, and the Princeton Club of Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee, which he served as treasurer. He was active in the congressional campaigns of his brother, James “Jamie” Clarke ’39, who died in 1999.

Monty, who never married, is survived by a sister, Phebe Ann Lewis, the widow of our classmate Burdette “Burt” Lewis, who died in 1967, and by a large number of nieces and nephews and their children. To them all the class extends sincere sympathy.

The Class of 1934



Bill died of pneumonia June 28, 2004, in Walnut Creek, Calif., after suffering a coronary in late May.

Leaving college in his sophomore year, he had a brief stint acting in short-lived plays in New York City, then went to work for International Silver Co. in Meriden, Conn. During World War II, while training as a navigator at Hood Army Air Corps Base in Houston, he met and married Edith Sperry. They had three children. Bill went on to serve in the Pacific theater, remaining in the Air Force for 22 years. He retired from his last posting as a colonel in 1963.

After a divorce, he married Irene Howard in 1966. They enjoyed 20 years of marriage in Detroit and San Francisco while he had a second career as a bank examiner with the FDIC. Divorced again, he retired to Walnut Creek, where in 1988 he married Evelyne Karo, who was at his side when he died.

Bill was a scratch golfer, avid bridge player, inveterate theater buff, and in later life, an enthusiastic sailor. In addition to Evelyne, he is survived by his children, Cathleen Litvack, Virginia Parrott, and Benjamin Rolston; three grandchildren; and his sister, Mary.

We offer them our sincere sympathy.

The Class of 1939



Dave died July 4, 2004, “very peacefully in his ancestral summer home in St. Andrew’s, New Brunswick, after only a few weeks of illness,” according to his son, Francis ’83.

He prepared at St. Mark’s School, following his father, Halstead Gurnee Freeman 1903, as well as his grandfather, great-grandfather, and four uncles to Princeton. Dave majored in economics, graduating with honors and other prizes in the School of Public and International Affairs. He played freshman baseball and varsity squash, served as news and editorial editor of the Princeton-ian, and was a member of the Glee Club, Triangle Club, Executive Committee, SPIA Student Government, and Cloister Inn.

Dave’s Navy service began in 1941 with assignments in Europe and the Pacific. He reached the rank of lieutenant commander and was awarded the Legion of Merit. He earned a law degree from Yale Law School in 1947. He was an executive with three philanthropic foundations: Fund for the Republic, Ford Foundation, and the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. In 1968, Dave became president of the Council on Foundations, a membership organization of grant makers. He belonged to the Princeton Club of New York City, was a trustee of Lingnan University in Hong Kong, and was director of the Oceanic Free Library.

He is survived by his five children: David Jr., Sims, Marion ’73, John, and Francis. To them, his classmates offer sincere condolences.

The Class of 1940



The class’ 50th-reunion P-rade in 1990 was energized by the presence of Beezie and his new family: his second, wife, Debbie, and their children, Sammy and Regina.

On Aug. 20, 2004, Debbie said, he died suddenly and unexpectedly of congestive heart failure. He prepared in Washington and at St. Paul’s School, then followed a long list of Lees to Princeton: “Lighthorse” Harry Lee in 1771; Beezie’s grandfather, Blair Lee 1880; father E. Brooke Lee ’16; and brother Blair Lee III ’38. Beezie majored in politics, and won the Walter E. Hope Cash Prize and New York Herald Prize. He lettered on the 150-pound championship football team, served on the Princetonian editorial board, was a member and officer of Whig Hall, director of the Student-Faculty Association, and a member of Princeton Executive Committee and Ivy Club.

During World War II, as captain of a Glider Infantry Company, Beezie served in the European theater. In 1957, he attended the Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program. Half of his business life was spent as a marketing executive with Scott Paper and half in commercial real-estate development as president of E. Brooke Lee Jr. Properties.

Survivors include his first wife, Brenda Lee, and their five children; second wife, Deborah Roche Lee, and their two children; 14 grandchildren; and six great-grandchildren. To them all, his classmates extend deep sympathies.

The Class of 1940



Bill, a lifelong advocate of peace and understanding in the world, was at peace Aug. 24, 2004, at Foxdale Village, State College, Pa.

He prepared at George School, and followed his father, William T. Thom Jr., Blair Professor of Geology, to Princeton. He majored in the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, and was a member and officer of the Anti-War Society, Whig, Chapel Choir, Westminster Society’s Boys Club, and Gateway Club.

Bill returned to George School after graduation, teaching reading and English while serving as assistant dean. He later earned a master’s in 1952 and a doctorate in clinical psychology in 1962 from Penn State University. He joined the Children’s Service Center in Wilkes-Barre, Pa., in 1956, retiring as staff psychologist 30 years later. Bill belonged to the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the American and Pennsylvania psychological associations, and the International Reading Association. He held various positions in the Society of Friends, was chairman of the Wyoming Valley Committee for a SANE Nuclear Policy, and helped to found the Wyoming Valley Peace Center.

He is survived by his wife of 45 years, Mary Hodgson Albertson; daughters Margaret Thorn and Rachel Thorn Haverkos; and sisters Judith Phelps and Elizabeth Robinson. To them all, his classmates express sincere condolences.

The Class of 1940



Dick died July 10, 2004, of complications from knee-replacement surgery.

A native of Baltimore, he prepared at the Gilman School. At Princeton he majored in chemistry, was a member of Sigma Xi, and graduated with honors. He was on the freshman and JV wrestling teams, roomed with Alexander Randall, and joined Cloister Inn.

During World War II, Dick worked on the Manhattan Project in Princeton under Professor Hugh Taylor. Afterward he spent a brief period with Air Reduction Co., Inc. before returning to Princeton to earn a PhD in chemistry. Dick then joined the research department at Standard Oil Co. before moving to the Okonite Co. as manager of research in high-voltage cable insulation. He became president at Hasche Engineering Co., designing gas-generating plants. In 1964 Dick became president of Kalamazoo Spice Extraction Co., retiring in 1981 to become associate professor of engineering at Lake Michigan College until 1988.

Predeceased in May 2004 by his wife of 58 years, Geraldine Hasche Clarke, Dick is survived by his daughter, Karen Krieger; his sons, Richard Jr., Peter ’73, and H. Bushnell; and five grandchildren.

The Class of 1941



Bill died May 23, 2004.

A native of Buffalo, he graduated from the Nichols School. At Princeton, Bill majored in politics, played freshman football and basketball, and was manager of the Parking Squad. He was a manager of Quadrangle Club, rooming junior year with Bruce Alger and Jack Turner, and senior year with Tom Mederos and Bernard Griffin.

During World War II, Bill joined the Air Corps and went through OCS to serve as a supply officer at the Burtonwood Air Depot Base in England. He separated as a captain in 1945. Bill then went to work for the Gates Rubber Co. in Denver, Colo., becoming a supervisor with the automotive sales division. In 1954 he joined KLZ TV-Time Life in Denver, selling advertising. Bill retired in 1982 from KMGH-TV.

Active in the Denver community, Bill was on the board of the Denver Museum of Natural History, a member of the Denver Zoological Foundation, and president of the Denver Advertising Foundation. He served on the vestry and as senior warden for St. Michael and All Angels’ Church.

Bill was predeceased by his wife of 56 years, Dorothy Saunderson Hubbell, and by a grandson. He is survived by daughters Mary Anne Sehorn and Josephine Thome; son William W. Jr.; nine grandchildren; and four great-grandchildren.

The Class of 1941



Hunter, a prominent investment banker, died July 10, 2004.

Having prepared at Phillips Academy Andover, he majored in biology, played polo, and was a member of Triangle Club and Charter Club.

Assigned to the Army’s 82nd Airborne Division in World War II, Hunter fought in the Battle of the Bulge, received a Purple Heart and Bronze Star, and performed occupation duty in Berlin as captain in operations headquarters. In 1943 he married Sally Ben Russell. They had two children, Mary Collier and Hunter S. III. Eventually they were divorced. In 1966 Hunter married Helga di Verna.

Except for a stint in Oklahoma City as an independent oil operator, Hunter was in investment banking with Glore, Forgan & Co. and the successor merger with William R. Stats & Co. in 1965. Hunter helped organize Eurofund, an investment company specializing in European securities. In recognition of his outstanding performance, he was promoted from vice president of finance at Glore, Forgan to president of Eurofund.

In retirement Hunter was an avid golfer. He and Helga enjoyed worldwide traveling and loved entertaining their wide circle of friends at the Everglades Club and Bath and Tennis Club in Palm Beach, Fla.

To Helga, Mary, and Hunter, the class expresses its deepest condolences.

The Class of 1942



Kelley died July 9, 2004, in Bellaire, Ohio, his hometown, after an extended illness.

He graduated from Bellaire High School, where he was active in band, glee club and debating. At Princeton he was in both the University Band and Whig-Clio for three years.

Kelley majored in political science and was a member of Dial Lodge. He left for military service in 1943, became an Army 2nd lieutenant in the European theater, and returned to graduate in 1947. He graduated from Harvard Law School in 1950, and made an unsuccessful run for the Republican nomination for Ohio state treasurer the same year.

A career lawyer in his own firm in nearby Bridgeport, Kelley was also active in area professional and civic associations, veterans groups, and high-school booster organizations. He became discontented with Princeton’s conversion to a coed university in 1969 (as well as the football team’s conversion to T-formation from single-wing), and withdrew from us for many years. But in our 50th yearbook, he wrote of his long satisfaction with being a “small-town lawyer,” and wished us all well. The tie remains.

Kelley is survived by his wife of 51 years, Eileen H. Archer, to whom we extend our sincere condolences.

The Class of 1944



Charlie died June 21, 2004, in Easton, Pa.

A graduate of Brooklyn Technical High School, he entered Princeton in 1942 to study mechanical engineering. Enjoying rugby, baseball, and band, Charlie joined the Navy and continued college at Swarthmore, graduating in 1945 with a bachelor’s in mechanical engineering. He earned a PhD at Virginia Polytechnic Institute with a dissertation on “An Integral Equation Approach to Vibrating Plates.”

He first taught mathematics at Mohawk College in Hamilton, Ontario, then became an instructor in engineering at Lafayette College in Easton, leaving for two years to work for Johns Manville in Pennington, N.J.

In 1954 he became an associate professor at Lafayette, then became a full professor of mechanics and engineering in 1965, continuing in that capacity until his retirement in 1994. In the 1960-61 year he took a sabbatical leave in London with his family.

Charlie was married in 1954 to the late Margaret Backes and they had three sons, Charles Jr., Timothy, and William. To them, the class extends its sympathy on the loss of our eminent classmate.

The Class of 1946



Dick died June 17, 2003, at home in Versailles, Ky.

He came to Princeton in 1942 after graduating from Mount Sterling [Ky.] High to major in biology as a premedical student. After six months in Army training, he entered Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons, earning a medical degree in 1948. After internship at Bellevue Hospital in New York City, he completed residency at the University of California Hospital in San Francisco, then moved to Lexington, Ky., to begin a long career as an internist. He became medical director at Kentucky Veterans Center in 1993.

Dick played varsity football and JV basketball at Princeton. He first was married to Patsy Carran for about 20 years, then married Sara Houston in 1976. She survives him as do his two sons by his first marriage, Daniel and William P. French; stepsons John and James Frazier; and stepdaughter Jane Nunnelly. The class extends its sympathy to them.

The Class of 1946



Jack died Aug. 17, 2004, of kidney failure at his home in Boulder, Colo.

He came to Princeton from East Orange [N.J.] High in 1942 for engineering, joined the Navy V-12 program at Cornell, and graduated with our class in 1947. His business career began in New York City with Cities Service Co., continued with Standard Oil, and then in 1965 with Gould, Inc., in Boulder as division manager. He later ran his own Diversified Marketing Co. there.

Always a strong family man, Jack married Jeanne Powell in 1947 and they had three sons, William L., Christopher M., and John P.; a daughter, Patricia Gogerty; and four grandchildren. The family enjoyed many travels together. To them all, the class joins in mourning the loss of a fine Tiger. 

The Class of 1946



We lost Roge Feb. 25, 2004. Many of us first came to know him as a popular shipmate in that memorable V-12 crew who first mustered at Little Hall in July ’43.

Roge went to the Pacific Fleet in ’44 and returned in ’46 with hopes for a foreign-service career via Princeton’s SPIA. Unfortunately, his social life embezzled this objective, and he left Princeton to secure a bachelor’s degree at Wooster College. Buckling down, he “wrestled” an MBA from Columbia and settled into a rewarding career in New York as an appraiser of all kinds of New York real estate — including the Brooklyn Navy Yard.

Roge happily united this vocation with his longtime avocation — exploring New York’s diverse neighborhoods by bicycle and foot. Few knew or loved the city more than he.

In 1983 he married delightful Judith. Sadly, thereafter he lost John, his son by his first marriage, but, happily, he and Judith were “blessed with Jimmy” in 1987, and, more recently, with adopted son Sean Karolis from Lithuania.

For decades Roge served his parish in many capacities. Loving merriment, he organized sing-alongs for neighborhood youngsters — teaching them to appreciate the tunes of our times. Indeed, he lived a life marked by a graceful combination of great peace of mind and love of infectious fun.

To Judith and the boys we extend our affection and sympathy.

The Class of 1947



With Bill’s merciful release from Alzheimer’s April 28, 2004, we lost a classmate remembered and loved for his inner-directed, constant, magnetic smile, warmth, gentleness, and happiness.

Bill fought with the 10th Mountain Division in Italy and formed lasting bonds with his comrade veterans of that harsh campaign. He returned to postwar Princeton and married Polly in 1949 as he began his senior year. An international business career (in insurance) led to enriching sojourns, over a 10-year span, in Havana, Seoul, Hong Kong, Caracas – and to an enduring love of travel.

In 1963 the family returned to Rutland, Vt. Bill succeeded his father as president of the Marble Savings Bank and presided over a three-fold growth in its assets. As an indigenous “Green Mountain Boy,” he indulged his passion for skiing almost to his death.

A list of Bill’s outside interests, attachments to diverse groups, and especially his pro bono services (including those to our class) would consume pages. So would a list of those who came to love him, for he truly enjoyed meeting and learning from people of all backgrounds, ages, and lifestyles, and was never heard to speak ill of anyone. Even when gripped by Alzheimer’s, he radiated warmth to those he no longer remembered.

We tender this brief testament to Polly with admiration and love, and to all the family with affection.

The Class of 1947



Dave died Aug. 23, 2004, in Fort Myers, Fla., of complications from diabetes.

His entire professional life of 35 years was with the large fastener manufacturer Russell, Burdsall & Ward. He retired in 1986 as senior vice president of sales and marketing. On retirement he and Barbara moved to Sanibel Island, Fla.,where he was active in community affairs.

A Chicago native and graduate of New Trier High School in Winnetka, Ill., Dave participated in track, football, and swimming at Princeton. A member of Tiger Inn and the Undergraduate Council, he graduated with honors in economics. He was in the Navy from 1945-46 and earned a management degree from Northeastern University. He was a lifelong golf and boating enthusiast. He was a regular at our major reunions.

To Barbara, his dearly loved wife of 55 years, and their children, Douglas, Steven, and Virginia, the class offers its affectionate condolences. Our loyal friend will be sorely missed.

The Class of 1948



Dave died June 8, 2004, at his home in Princeton after a long illness.

He graduated from the Horace Mann School in New York City and attended Princeton for three years before transferring to the University of Pennsylvania, where he received his bachelor’s degree. While at Princeton he was a member of Court Club, and as a freshman participated in the theft of the clapper.

After Penn he moved to North Carolina, brokered life insurance for three years, and graduated with a medical degree from Duke University in 1958. After a year’s internship at Bellevue Hospital of NYU Medical Center, he became an assistant resident in neurosurgery at Boston City Hospital. He returned to Princeton in 1969, where he was a retired physician at his death.

Dave was an avid distance runner and hiked along the Appalachian Trail.

Our condolences go to his seven children, Donald ’74, Celia, Edith, Emily, Daniel, Michael, and Amy; stepmother Margaret Spanel; his half-sister, Ann Spanel; and two grandchildren.

The Class of 1950 



Dorion was born Jan. 27, 1929, in New Orleans. He died Dec. 19, 2003, in Montgomery, Ala., having been in fragile health for some years.

“D” was a member of the Woodberry Forest Class of ’47. At Princeton he was a geology major, a member of Cap and Gown, and active on the varsity track team. In the early years his roommates were Govan Hill, Selvage, Siedler, Stockham, and Wes Wright. Senior year he roomed with a group at Cap and Gown that included Wally DuPré, Nip McCampbell, and Jim Sparkman. Dorion was a geologist involved in oil and gas exploration. At one time he had a drinking problem, which he overcame when he joined AA in 1971; he always referred to March 14 as his AA birthday.

He is survived by his wife Twyla, daughters Leslie and Amelie, three grandsons, four stepchildren, and 10 step-grandchildren. His son, Tad (Dorion III), predeceased him. His old friend Wally remembers D’s great sense of humor and says he could charm the bark off a tree. He relived our 50th right up until his death and was hoping to be at our 55th.

The Class of 1951



Lee was born in New York City Jan. 26, 1929, son of the late Harold and Anita Burmester McCormick. He died April 23, 2004, in Bay Village, Ohio. For some time he had suffered from Alzheimer’s disease.

An only child, Lee went to Westfield [N.J.] High School, where he won the Bausch and Lomb Science Prize and the Rensselaer Math Prize. He earned his bachelor’s in mechanical engineering and was a member of Terrace Club, the Tigertones, and the Glee Club. Lee roomed with John Lambert, Scott Reid, and Harvey Robbins.

After graduation, he went to work for Union Carbide Metals Co. in Niagara Falls, N.Y., and later was project engineer for the International Eveready Battery Division. He served as a lieutenant in the Navy for four years. Lee and Lois Ingram were married in 1953. At one time, he supervised sports activities for underprivileged boys for the Niagara Falls Jaycees and was an officer in the local civic improvement club.

He is survived by his wife, Lois; their children, Scott, Randy and LuAnn; and six grandchildren. Memorials may be made to the Trudeau Institute at Saranac Lake, N.Y. Trudeau is an independent research center dealing with the body’s immune system.

The Class of 1951



Don died Sept. 8, 2002, of metastatic melanoma, in his Ormond Beach, Fla., home.

He came to Princeton from Tenafly [N.J.] High School and enjoyed success as an economics major, a member of the track team, and a member of Tiger Inn. His greatest Princeton distinction, however, was being the first nonveteran student approved by Dean Francis R.B. Godolphin to marry and return to the University. He and his beloved Janet began their 50-year-plus marriage in 1951.

Immediately after graduation, Don joined General Motors Overseas Operations. He rose quickly to senior management and served GM faithfully, enthusiastically, and well until total and permanent disability forced him to retire in 1988.

In particular he treasured the wealth of experience afforded him and his family by 13 years of GM service in South Africa, two in Saudi Arabia, and five in Egypt. He wrote of always having a part of his heart in South Africa where, before his health degenerated, he had planned annual stays in a small chalet outside of Kruger National Park. Though his last years proved difficult, Don reveled ceaselessly in his loving family, his indomitable spirit never flagging.

To Janet, his four children, and nine grandchildren, the class extends its deepest sympathy.

The Class of 1952



John Bernhardt Wilson of Charlotte, N.C., died at his family home Aug. 27, 2004, after a long illness.

John was born in Lenoir, N.C. He prepared for Princeton at the Woodberry Forest School. He was a history major and a member of Cottage Club, and played varsity baseball and football. After Princeton, he graduated from Harvard Business School and Union Theological Seminary in Richmond, Va.

During his professional life, he worked as a minister, a college professor, and a businessman. He was an avid outdoorsman and spent much of his retirement in the North Carolina mountains, Edisto Island, and the Florida Everglades.

The class extends its sympathy to his wife, Lee; his children, Katherine Wilson Singleton, Dorothy Wilson Chappell, and John Bernhardt Wilson Jr.; six grandchildren; seven stepchildren; 15 step-grandchildren; and his brother, James Douglas Wilson.

The Class of 1954



Tom died of cancer Aug. 8, 2004, at his Atlanta, Ga., home.

A New York native, Tom graduated from Phillips Academy Andover in 1953. After a year at Princeton, he left for the Yale School of Architecture, graduating in 1961.

He began his career in New York City with Voorhees, Walker, Smith and Haines, overseeing construction of skyscrapers including the Presidential Tower in Newark, and the transformation of the Tunes Tower into the Allied Chemical Building.

In 1966 he moved south, associating with several Atlanta firms and becoming involved in major projects such as the Regency Square Center in Jacksonville, Fla., Tower Place in Georgia, and the law school at Emory University. Other large projects included the Redstone Arsenal at Huntsville, Ala., and the historic Georgian Terrace Hotel in Atlanta.

His interests included classical music, the theater, and the arts. He loved to converse on many subjects, especially politics and the world’s problems.

Survivors include his wife, Alexandra, son Christopher, daughter Elizabeth, brother James, and sister Elizabeth. To his family, our class extends its sympathy.

The Class of 1957



After a courageous 11-month battle with cancer, Stan died in St. Michaels, Md., Sept. 4, 2004. He was 66.

Stan came to Princeton from Tarrytown, N.Y. He took one year off and graduated in 1961. While at Princeton, he made many friends and was greatly respected by all his classmates. He was a starting guard on the 1959 and 1960 varsity football teams, and was elected president of Cannon Club in 1961.

After graduation, Stan had a successful career in contracting. Initially, he worked for Delta Electric in White Plains, N.Y., and then John Doris International in NYC and Puerto Rico. Most of his later career was spent with Fishback & Moore in Boston and Dallas. More recently, he started an electrical contracting subsidiary of Morrison & Knutsen. He retired a few years ago but continued consulting.

Stan enjoyed football, golf, and outdoor sports. His real passion, however, was cruising and racing his 40-foot sailboat, Lion’s Pride, with friends and family out of Buzzards Bay, Mass., Castine, Maine, the Chesapeake Bay, and the Virgin Islands. His many friends who sailed with him will miss him deeply.

Stan is survived by sons Scott, James, and Greg; two grandchildren; his companion of later years, Lois Donahue; and his beloved sister, June. To all of them, the class sends condolences.

The Class of 1960



Frank died July 8, 2004, in an auto accident in which his wife, Rita, was badly injured.

Born and raised in suburban Chicago, he entered Princeton from Glynbard High School in Glen Ellyn. At Princeton, Frank was in Cloister, roomed with Bob Lewis, Bob Pickens, and Roger Bermas, and graduated summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa with a degree in mathematics. He then studied in Germany for a year as a Fulbright Scholar before earning his doctorate in mathematics at Cornell.

A world-class fencer, Frank captained our team, was a two-time All-American in epee and NCAA Fencer of the Year in 1961, competed on two Pan American teams, and, in 1964, was on the U.S. Olympic team.

He taught at the University of Puerto Rico for many years, during which time he married Rita Rodriguez. They then moved to Florida, where he earned a second PhD, this time in computer science, at the University of Florida. His next career step was with the National Science Foundation in Washington, where he was working when he died.

Frank is survived by Rita; their sons Angel, Gustavo, and Arthur; his mother, Julia Anger; and his brother, Arthur ’59, to all of whom the class sends its condolences.

The Class of 1961



Kristi was diagnosed with stage-four lung cancer in May 2002 and died peacefully in her sleep May 7, 2004. Kristi was active for 18 months after her diagnosis, continuing to sing at her church and blessing her family with an extra year together. According to her husband, Arnim Holzer ’81, whom Kristi married in August 1983, “she’s in the greatest choir ever now. And we have that assurance because she was a believer.”

As a child, Kristi sang professionally with the New York City Opera. She came to Princeton from Milburn [N.J.] High School. She was a University Scholar, English major, and Tigerlily, and belonged to Tower Club and the Princeton Evangelical Fellowship.

After graduation Kristi joined the retail buying and merchandise program at Lord & Taylor. In 1984, she became a regional training manager at Esteé Lauder, rising to regional marketing director and director of sales promotion. She was also an Elizabeth Arden regional sales director and a Carolee Designs national sales manager. In 1991 and 2001 Kristi quit working to spend more time with her family.

The class sends its condolences to Arnim; their children Mary (15), Grace (13), and James (9); Kristi’s parents, Lois and Ralph Frank; and brother Ralph Frank Jr.

The Class of 1981

Graduate Alumni


Xiaokai “Xiguang” Yang, chaired professor of economics at Monash University, died of lung cancer in Melbourne, Australia, July 7, 2004. He was 55.

Xiaokai’s extraordinary life touched upon important currents in recent history. He was born in China to leading Communist Party officials, who provided him an excellent education and a privileged life. This ended when, as a high school student during the Cultural Revolution, he wrote the treatise, Whither China? Denounced, Xiaokai spent the next 10 years in the Chinese gulags. In despair, his mother, Chen Su, took her own life. Xiaokai’s memoir, Captive Spirits, is a haunting evocation of those times.

While in prison, Xiaokai studied English and calculus. After his release, he attended Hunan University and then Princeton, where he received a doctorate in economics. Xiaokai rose through the ranks at Monash University and was elected a fellow of Australia’s Academy of the Social Sciences in 1993.

During his imprisonment, Xiaokai had deeply admired a mathematics professor who also was a devout Christian. Having explored mathematical economics in his work, in 2002 Xiaokai was baptized in the Anglican Church.

Survivors include his wife, Jean; his daughter, Xiaoxi; and his sons, James and Edward.

end of article

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